Quarterly Report: 2014, July - September (Q1), Mountain Village

Community:
Mountain Village 
Staff:
Ken Berlin  
DCRA Regional Office:
 
Gov't Type:
Second Class City 
Borough:
 
Agreement?
No 
Agreement Date:
 
Entity:
City of Mountain Village 
Population:
784  
Assessment Status:
 
Assessment Date:
 
Exp Date:
 
Last Updated:
10/10/2013 
Community Sanitation Overview:
The city council operates and maintains the piped water and wastewater system to 165 households and commercial users. This system was built in the 1970s. It has four wells and a pump station from the Yukon river from which it gets its water supply. Water is distributed by two loops, a lower and upper loop. Two main pumps, middle and upper pump houses circulate water. Water is stored in two 100,000 gallon storage tanks. The wastewater system is a Rotating Biological Contractor (RBC) but currently not functional. Wastewater is being drained into the Yukon River. 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
In July, RUBA staff traveled to Mountain Village to provide training to the new city manager and finance director. The citys gaming department activities were stopped last December when the permit expired because required reports were not submitted. Gaming revenue is used to subsidize the water utility. RUBA staff also provided assistance reconciling the citys bank accounts and completing the FY 13 financial reports, and provided training on how to prepare the FY14 budget, which includes the water utility. RUBA staff also provided information regarding the citys RUBA status and discussed the citys water and wastewater system, which is over 30 years old and failing. Water has been shut off in some parts of the village since a freeze up last winter. On August 15, the new city manager for Mountain Village contacted RUBA staff with several questions. RUBA staff discussed with the manager the managers relationship to the council, authority concerning city staff, following the personnel policy, and documenting critical interactions in writing. RUBA staff also informed the new manager of the RUBA sponsored Personnel Management class and sent registration forms. On August 29, the city manager contacted RUBA staff and said the city council met and passed the FY14 budget, which includes the water utility budget. The FY14 budget was the last requirement in order for the city to receive its community revenue sharing funds from the state.  
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
Finance reports are current up to March 2013 but no meeting minutes are available. RUBA staff will continue to monitor for compliance. A city manager needs to be trained and attend utility management training courses. City needs to renew the AML/JIA workers compensation insurance.
Scores:
 
Essential Indicators:
19 of 26
Sustainable Indicators:
24 of 27
Total Score:
43 of 53

Finances

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes All revenues and expenses for the utility are listed in the utility budget.
Yes The utility has adopted a balanced realistic budget.
No Monthly financial reports are prepared and submitted to the policy making board.
No The utility is current in paying all water/wastewater electric bills.
Yes The utility has on hand a year's adequate fuel supply or it has a financial plan to purchase an adequate supply.
No The utility is receiving revenues (user fees or other sources) sufficient to cover operating expenses.
Sustainable Indicators
Answer Question
No The utility is receiving revenues (user fees or other sources sufficient to cover operating expenses and Repair & Replacement (R) costs.
No YTD revenues are at a level equal to or above those budgeted.
No YTD expenditures are at a level equal to or below those budgeted.
Yes A monthly manager's report is prepared.
Yes Budget amendments are completed and adopted as necessary.
Finances Comments
The city manager and finance director prepare and manage the City of Mountain Village's financial information. The FY14 budget is on file. Finance reports are up-to-date to March 2013 but not recorded in the minutes. Finance reports were requested but not submitted. August 2013 AVEC billings are several months behind due to cash flow problems the city went through, billings should be paid by end of August 2013. The city has adequate fuel supply to last until spring barge. The city does not have a Repair and Replacement account.

Accounting Systems

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The utility has adopted a collection policy and actively follows it.
Yes The utility bills customers on a regular basis.
Yes An accounts receivable system is in place which tracks customers and reports past due accounts and amounts.
Yes An accounts payable system is in place.
Yes The payroll system correctly calculates payroll and keeps records.
Yes A cash receipt system is in place that records incoming money and how it was spent.
Yes The utility has a cash disbursement system that records how money was spent.
Sustainable Indicators
Answer Question
Yes A chart of accounts is used that identifies categories in a reasonable, usable manner.
Yes Monthly bank reconciliations have been completed for all utility accounts.
Yes The utility has a purchasing system that requires approval prior to purchase, and the approval process compares proposed purchases to budgeted amounts.
Accounting Systems Comments
The city follows its collection policy and enforces it. The utility customers are billed on a monthly basis. Accounting system is in QuickBooks Pro. A chart of accounts is on file. Monthly bank reconciliations are completed every month. A purchasing system is in place and used by administration.

Tax Problems

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The utility has a system to accurately calculate, track, and report payroll tax liabilities.
No The utility is current on filing tax reports.
No The utility is current on making tax deposits.
N/A If there are any past due tax liabilities or recorded tax liens, a lien release has been issued or a repayment agreement has been signed and repayments are current.
Tax Problems Comments
According to the bookkeeper the reports are all current and payroll tax deposits are made after every payroll. IRS confirmed non-compliance on June 26, 2013. For 2013/03 small amount due. State DOL verified non-compliance for June 2013, missing first quarter report. No tax liens recorded on the July-August 2013 Lien Watch.

Personnel System

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
No The utility has a posted workers compensation insurance policy in effect.
Sustainable Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The utility has adopted and uses a Personnel Policy, which has been reviewed by an attorney, AML or Commerce for topics and language.
Yes The utility has adequate written job descriptions for all positions.
Yes The utility has adopted and follows a written personnel evaluation process that ties the job description to the evaluation.
Yes The utility has an adequate written hiring process.
Yes The utility has personnel folders on every employee that contain at least: I-9, Job Application and Letter of Acceptance.
Yes The utility has a probationary period for new hires that includes orientation, job training/oversight, and evaluations.
Yes The utility provides training opportunities to staff as needed and available.
Personnel System Comments
The city was insured by the Alaska Municipal League Joint Insurance Association, Inc. effective to July 2013, but has not been renewed. The city has a personnel policies and procedures handbook that was prepared by Alaska Municipal League Joint Insurance Association.

Organizational Management

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The entity that owns the utility is known; the entity that will operate the utility is set.
Yes The policy making body is active in policy making of the utility.
Yes The policy making body enforces utility policy.
No The utility has an adequately trained manager.
Yes The utility has an adequately trained bookkeeper.
Yes The utility has an adequately trained operator or operators.
Yes The utility has adopted the necessary ordinances (or rules and regulations) necessary to give it the authority to operate.
Sustainable Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The utility has adopted an organizational chart that reflects the current structure.
Yes The policy making body meets as required.
Yes The utility complies with the open meeting act for all meetings.
Organizational Management Comments
The City of Mountain Village owns and operates the piped water and wastewater system. The city council is the policy making body for the utility. The city manager was hired in July 2013 and needs training. The acting bookkeeper was hired in July 2013 and is experienced with QuickBooks. She is getting familiar with the city's finances and operations. The water and wastewaster operator works full time and is adequately trained. They have two back-up operators; one is OIT certified in water distribution and a certificate to Introduction to Small Water Systems. The other backup has a certificate to Introduction to Small Water Systems and Water Treatment Plant Maintenance Training. The city has adopted a water utility ordinance that gives it the authority to operate, and it covers most of the aspects needed in a utility ordinance. Along with a collection policy, the ordinance includes policies on service area, level of service, customer agreements, the utility's responsibilities, the customers' responsibilities, billing procedures, shut-off procedures, and penalties for violating provisions of the ordinance. This ordinance was passed in 1989 and is being updated.

Operation of Utility

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The utility operator(s) are actively working towards necessary certification.
Yes The utility has a preventative maintenance plan developed for the existing sanitation facilities.
Sustainable Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The manager receives a monthly O&M report from the utility operator and routinely "spot checks" the facilities to see that the maintenance items are being completed.
Yes The utility has a safety manual and holds safety meetings.
Yes Utility facilities have not suffered any major problems/outages due to management issues that are unresolved.
Yes The utility is operating at the level of service that was proposed.
Yes The operator provides status reports to the manager on a routine basis.
Yes The utility has completed and distributed its "Consumer Confidence Report".
Yes The utility is not on the "Significant Non-Complier" (SNC) list.
Yes The utility maintains an inventory control list.
Yes The utility maintains a critical spare parts list.
Operation of Utility Comments
The operators are trained but need the necessary certification to operate the current utility. AMLJIA holds monthly safety meetings with the city staff. The preventative maintenance plan, inventory control list and critical spare parts list are in the file.